Guide

International trade regulations in the Telecoms, radiocomms and broadcasting equipment sector

Working with the CE mark when importing and exporting

Most radio equipment (RE) and telecommunications terminal equipment (TTE) must carry CE marking to show it complies with RE and/or TTE requirements before it can be placed on the European Union (EU) market. RE and TTE equipment must:

  • be constructed to protect users and other people from health and safety hazards
  • have an adequate level of electromagnetic compatibility
  • not cause harmful interference, in the case of radio equipment
  • have up-to-date technical documentation at the manufacturer's or importer's premises showing how the equipment complies with the requirements - ie that it has the right to bear the CE mark on the product and/or packaging

Although some products can be self-certified, others must undergo independent assessment of conformity where required by the Notified Body.

Do you need to CE mark your product?

If your products are covered by any European-wide regulations on safety, design or manufacture, you'll have to obtain a CE mark. Your local Invest NI office provides advice about CE marks in your particular product area. Find technical advice and support on the Invest NI website.

How to get a CE mark for your product

The process will depend on which legislation is applicable to your product. It may be possible for your business to self-certify. You may also have to get confirmation of satisfactory testing, inspection or quality assessment from an officially recognised organisation (referred to as a Notified Body).

In either case, you'll have to keep appropriate records to show that you're following the relevant regulatory requirements.

Read a step-by-step guide to the CE marking process on the British Standards Institution (BSI) website.

Using the CE mark

There are strict rules governing how a CE mark must be used. It must be affixed visibly, legibly and indelibly to the product itself. If this isn't possible, it must be affixed to the packaging and any accompanying documents, eg instruction booklets. If a Notified Body validates your product, the mark must also carry the body's identification number.

Penalties

If you don't use the CE mark when required, you may be instructed to remove your products from sale until they're properly marked. If there are safety concerns, you could be fined or even imprisoned.